For a long time dreams have been misrepresented or ignored; in our busy modern world, we might even ask what relevance they have at all. I’ve seen prominent speakers in the world of sleep science tell us to ignore them (which understandably sends dream researchers, who have made it their life’s work, in to a bit of a spin). Others boil them down to a random set of images that we have in our minds at night. If that were true, we wouldn’t be able to make sense of our dreams, at least not the ones that happen in REM sleep.
The value of dreams has been proven, time and again. And ultimately, we can’t stop them happening, so we might as well explore how we can make them work to our advantage. The changes we’ve seen in our sleep and dreaming habits since COVID-19 have highlighted that there’s more going on in our minds, than what we scratch the surface with every day.
In [Answers in the Dark], I will be sharing what I’ve learned in a lifetime so far of helping people, which offers food for thought, alongside tips that might help. This isn’t a prescription of what dreams mean, nor is it a dream dictionary, but an honest look at what they are, how they can help and where to start in understanding them.
Our fear of dreams is nothing new. For hundreds of years, exploring dreams was seen as messing with unknown forces, in some cases people did (and still do) conflate dream interpretation with devil worship. People are so scared their dreams make them look weird, or that something is wrong with them – which has rarely, if ever, been the case in my experience – they’re too scared to speak of them. …
The way I describe them is that dreams are like a friend offering advice. Sometimes we pay attention. Sometimes we don’t. But they create the possibility that we can connect what’s in our awareness with what lays underneath, to bring about a sense of equilibrium. This is why I believe our dreams are so helpful if, for example, we have unresolved grief.
Dreams can also be likened to a gift, one that only you can unwrap. Although dreams can be troubling, they are more like an encrypted, secret message with their own personal code. This means the dreamer already has everything they need to decide ultimately what they mean, even if they seem a mystery at first.
Although the subject has been talked about for thousands of years, and theorists have talked about their purpose, there is no fixed way to interpret them, or a special Enigma machine that can unravel their meaning. But this is a good thing. It means if you tell your neighbour the dream you had last night, whilst they might draw their own conclusions about what’s going on in your life, they can never truly know. Ultimately, your privacy is protected within the sacred space of your mind.
© Delphi Ellis 2022
(The show i did with Delphi on my podcast: https://www.blogtalkradio.com/starzcast )
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